When asked if Browns incentivized losing, Hue Jackson says he “could not win” in that situation

Cleveland Browns v Cincinnati Bengals
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After Brian Flores alleged in a lawsuit that the Dolphins offered him $100,000 per loss during the 2019 season, former Browns head coach Hue Jackson suggested something similar happened while he was going 1-31 during his first two seasons on the job.

Jackson tweeted that he could back up an allegation from the executive director of his foundation that he and team executives were paid bonuses for losing. The Browns issued a statement denying that they incentivized anyone to deliberately lose games.

During an appearance on ESPN on Wednesday, Jackson said he was “put in a situation where I could not win” and that the team had a plan that “did not talk about winning and losing until Year 3 and 4” but did not say he was directly incentivized to lose games when Elle Duncan asked him about that aspect of his comments.

“What I was approached by is understanding what the four-year plan was,” Jackson said. “And I think if we understood the mechanics of it, and how it was laid out, I never knew the plan would lead to those things and I didn’t understand it to be very honest. And then once I was in it, and understood everything that was on that plan and how it affected myself and how others were being paid from it, then it made sense to me that this is a team that can’t win, that the first two years, that’s why it doesn’t talk about winning.”

Jackson went on to say that he “wasn’t offered $100,000 for every game, but there was a substantial amount of money made within what happened in this situation every year at the end of it” and said that he received a contract extension after the first two years with Browns owner Jimmy Haslam saying “I feel bad for you” because of what the record would do to Jackson’s reputation as a coach.

Jackson wound up being fired early in his third season and no one watching from the outside would argue that the Browns put together a top-flight roster in 2016 and 2017. That’s a different allegation than paying employees to lose games, however, and Jackson’s clarification takes much of the sting out of his earlier comments.

40 responses to “When asked if Browns incentivized losing, Hue Jackson says he “could not win” in that situation

  1. If he accepted money, he’s guilty. That means he was in on it and kept quite if the checks kept coming. He has no evidence or it will find HIM guilty with the rest of them.

  2. So did you get incentive to lose or not? The water is already murky, let’s be clear Hugh

  3. He couldn’t “win” in that situation, well it’s awfully funny that a more competent coaching staff came in and have been able to win with the Browns. This feels like Hue Jackson looking to make up any excuse possible for the fact that he is arguably the worst NFL coach in league history. This dude has lost ever where he’s ever been basically, I take it all of those teams were paying him to lose to? Ridiculous. There is a reason why he’s now coaching at Grambling State University and that reason is he’s a bad head coach. Next stop for Hue Jackson will be the Junior College coaching circuit.

  4. Sounds like he’s saying he got a nebulous bonus at the end of the year for sticking to the plan, not really a ‘You get $X for every loss.’

  5. Could he of changed his story because he is worried about being convicted? He actually took the money and the losses. So, it would be easy to convict him

  6. My opinion is that Flores is trying to shed light on issues to change the culture at his own expense. Hue is trying to ride those coat tails to change his reputation. The crime committed to both of them may or may not have been the same, but their intentions in bringing things out now appear to be very different just from hearing both men speak.

  7. He’s backtracking his earlier comments of being paid to fix games now that he knows he can be charged with sports bribery, I hope they stick it to him with jail and fines and blackball him from all coaching! Who wants a coach who will lose for money? Took the money and then snitched, he needs to be held accountable!

  8. So only after the pay checks stopped coming AND after someone else refused to comply, got fired for it and spoke out, then Hue decided it was a good idea to piggy back off of their cause…. Not a good look for you, Hue, not a good look at all!

  9. No one in his right mind would listen to Clueless Hue. He’s just trying to find an owner as clueless as he is to hire him. The NFL should investigate anyway but don’t be surprised if it’s just more BS from Mr.1-31, a record breaking loser. Flores I’d listen to but Jackson is just jumping on for a ride to anywhere but the unemployment line.

  10. I followed the Browns for years Hue Jackson was complaining back then about he cant win with these players. Hes trying to be in the news again nothing to see here.

  11. I don’t know. He kind of made me doubt him with the way he worded things. At first he implies he was directly asked/paid to lose. But then it’s much less clear as he continues to give details. By the end it seems like he was saying that he thinks he got screwed over because the browns were rebuilding which is MUCH different than being asked to purposely lose games. It even seemed like he implied his “payment” was a contract extension.

  12. He did not win much with the Bengals either as he coached with Marvin Lewis who now is speaking. They had more than ample time in Cinn to win or were they being paid there also. If you are so irritated with this why not speak out then.

  13. Believe it or not, Hue had options as a HC candidate when he took the Browns job. He never should’ve taken that job. The Browns were in a total rebuild and Vince Lombardi himself wouldn’t have won with the team the Browns fielded his first couple of years. Jackson will never be more than a punchline as an NFL head coach. He should smile each month when his bank statement is tabulated and do the best he can at Grambling and stop talking about his time in Cleveland.

  14. Hue Jackson trying to be relevant incriminated himself on a pay to lose scenario and now he’s trying to walk it back, what a moron

  15. What a bafoon! I now give the management in Cleveland a lot more credit. They didn’t have to pay per loss they just hired Jackson and knew he couldn’t win.

  16. Well this changed into something really ambiguous and nuanced all of a sudden. Not worrying about winning at the start of a rebuild is a lot different than ordering people to intentionally lose.

    Flores seems to have much more of a black & white accusation – that he was literally, directly offered money to lose games. That’s something that demands proof and if there’s any proof, it would support the accusation.

    It still surprises me that it could ever be that literal, as opposed to something where the implication is clear without any words actually spelling it out. Plausible deniability, in other words.

  17. So are these young coaches actually winning? or are they playing teams whose only goal is to lose?

  18. pbdisciple says:
    February 3, 2022 at 11:54 am
    Keep peeling the onion and we’ll see what’s inside
    -More onion

  19. This one i dont beleive for one second of my life. Who is there right mind, your job, only job is produce a winning team. that is you life and soul. At that level you’ve been in football a long time and winning is the goal.
    To say oh I lost like 31 games not because I sucked at it but because my boss, a billionaire owner told me too. No one in there right mind would beleive that.

  20. The Cleveland Browns management, “We never intended to lose for so many many years, we just really suck at our job.”
    Tanking would actually make the organization look better…

  21. It sounds like their plan, by not talking about wins and losses until years three and four, was a four year rebuilding plan with Hue Jackson given the first two years to build without the pressure of winning. And after the worst two year span in NFL history, he was replaced in the third year because the team had not improved. In other words, nothing to see here, and Flores would be wise to distance himself from Hue Jackson because he would only harm the lawsuit.

  22. I’m upset if I’m Flores. Hue is tainting his lawsuit by making false accusations. Hue is just looking for the spotlight, selfishly. Once a clown always a clown.

  23. Those who have watched the browns since they came back into the league, know that they weren’t tanking. They were just bad.

  24. They had three first round picks in 2017 and no QB. They passed on all the top QBs for Deshon Kiser

  25. Hue Jackson’s comments leave open the door that, unlike Flores, he took the money and tanked.

  26. I thought they hired Jackson because they wanted to lose. Why give him anymore money when he was going to lose anyway.

  27. This should be investigated GREATLY by the NFL, FBI and IRS. There are SERIOUS gambling implications to what Hue Jackson is implying. There’s no difference in what he did and those boxers that purposefully hit the ground when a certain sign is given. Match fixing is illegal.

  28. They didn’t have to incentivize you to lose – you mastered that all by yourself

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